This is my flag. I love this flag, it has seen a lot of the world with me. It was given to me during my time in the United States Marine Corps by a guy that had been in longer and seen more stuff. I was young and stupid and sloppy and he had decided to mentor me a bit, to help me along. It was needed and it was really, really helpful. He helped me figure out how I wanted to be in the Marine Corps. He eventually received a new assignment, but before leaving, he gave me this flag. That was 1988. This flag meant a lot to me then and it means a lot to me now.

It does not, however, mean more to me than the values and principles that it represents to me. A big part of what this flag represents to me is freedom and liberty; and to me those are righteous things, huge, beautiful, powerful, magical things.

I will never burn this flag.

I am pretty sure that you are never going to burn this flag.

I do not ever like to see the American flag being burnt, it is an offensive thing to me.

As offensive as it is to me, I am still thankful that it happens. I am thankful because it provides fresh evidence of those underlying principles of freedom and liberty.

“My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.”

-Adlai Stevenson Jr.

“Freedom isn’t free” seems to be a pretty popular phrase these days, and I agree. It is not free. But the bill is not paid solely through the sacrifices made by men and women in our armed forces. You and I also need to pay for it in our relations and interactions with each other. We half to advocate on behalf of the freedoms of others.

“Freedom of speech includes the freedom to offend people.”

-Brad Thor

If I am just committed to my own freedom and liberty, but do not care about yours because I dislike, disagree with, or distrust you, then I am not really about freedom and liberty…I am just really about me and my stuff.

We could probably use a bit less of that.

Be good to each other.


Upcoming public offerings –>>

August 3rd – I am doing a pre-conference workshop “The Art of Leadership” with the lovely and talented Doug Shaw at the Illinois SHRM Conference.

August 5th – I am doing a pre-conference workshop “Culture Builder Bootcamp: The What, Why and How of Building an Inclusive Organizational Culture,” at the Missouri SHRM Conference.

September 2nd – FORWARD! St. Paul: Diversity and Inclusion Workshop with a Bias for Action

September 3rd – FORWARD! Minneapolis: Diversity and Inclusion Workshop with a Bias for Action

FORWARD! is a new and highly actionable 1/2 workshop, ping me if you are interested in bringing this workshop into your organization of if you would like to help bring it to your community.

September 17th – I will be delivering one of the keynote messages for the Kansas SHRM Conference.

See you when I see you.


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